I'm currently in England, and being here has given me a lot of reasons to revisit things that I loved during my childhood, especially books, games and characters. It started when I recently attended a trade show in London.
As I wandered the show, I saw so many influential characters + brands from my childhood, many of whom I had forgotten. And it made me consider how much influence they had on me creatively in my formative childhood years. I saw Hello Kitty, Barbie, Smiley, Peter Rabbit, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Miffy, to name a few.
I attended the BLE trade show in London, as I was live painting at the CapCom booth. CapCom is a Japanese gaming company and the creator of the Street Fighter games. I remembered being a little girl in Australia, playing Street Fighter 2 on one of those old school arcade consoles at the rollerskating rink I went to every weekend. I especially remembered the electric character Blanca. The memory must have been at least 30 years old. But there I was, in my 40's, at a trade show in London, painting a character from that game. It's remarkable how life unfolds.
Other video games that are very prominent in my childhood memory are Duck Hunt, Super Mario, Mario Kart and Zelda. Gaming and computer graphics have come a very long way since I was. child, but I believe the bold graphics had a huge impact on my artistic style. Revisiting this as an adult has been quite an informative undertaking, and I encourage you to take a trip down memory lane and do the same.
Think back to your own childhood, and remember the games you used to play. The books you loved to read. The characters you loved and resonated with.
How has this influenced your creativity? What do you remember most about these influences: Is it the graphic style? The colour palettes? The music? The story? The logos/branding? Take a moment to think about what you liked so much, and why? And then think about how this has influenced what and how you create today.
Here are a couple of great articles on this topic if you'd like to explore it further:
I'd love to hear about some of your creative influences from childhood, please let me know about them in the comments!